Patrons lamented the closure of the strip of business establishments along Commonwealth Avenue in Quezon City, which is commonly known as “PHILCOA.”
On Tuesday, January 31, some social media users reported that the branches of Jollibee and Mercury Drug in the area have closed down.
Goodbye, Jollibee Philcoa pic.twitter.com/jpZzsrIY2q
— Joshua C. Agar (@JoshuaCAgar) February 1, 2023
Today, 31 January 2023, is the last day of operation of Mercury PHILCOA.
There is no announcement posted regarding that anywhere in the premises, but you can hear persistent questions about it from customers. The many empty shelves are also noticeable. pic.twitter.com/NDyibtJDhi
— Mark Pere Madrona (@FilipinoScribe) January 31, 2023
Other shops such as McDonald’s, 7-Eleven, Red Ribbon, KFC, Mang Inasal, Chow King, and Mister Donut have also shut down.
Memories in Philcoa
As the restaurants and other establishments in PHILCOA close their doors, online users, especially students from the University of the Philippines felt sentimental. Others also recalled their memories in the area.
“Oh no…I had so many memories here [in Jollibee PHILCOA] during my UP days,” a social media user said.
“Thank you for serving all-nighter students and for being the kitaan pag may lakad/ender,” an online user wrote.
“Old enough to remember when its opening was greeted with protests because of the commercialization of the UP campus. It became my usual breakfast place in Diliman, especially if I had an 8 am class,” UP College of Law senior lecturer Oliver Reyes said.
“Mercury Drug was that one place in PHILCOA where you could buy groceries even late at night, Sesinet was the 24/7 internet shop on the 2nd floor, McDo & [and] Jollibee were Sunday dinner options after ROTC,” an online user wrote.
Employees of a business establishment in PHILCOA also expressed their gratitude to the fast food chain for giving them livelihood throughout the years.
“Thank you Jollibee UP PHILCOA for the memories…My first store, first job, second family, second bahay,” a former restaurant manager said.
“Sa lahat ng peak time, slack time, UPCAT times, JPLS, BOS, Christmas eve na nakaduty lahat nakakapagod pero masaya at fullfilling,” she added.
“Blessings kang maituturing na dumating sa tanang buhay ko sa loob ng halos 3 1/2 year nating pag sasama, kahit nung Pandemic at mga bagyo ang dumaan hindi mo kami iniwan Maraming salamat sa lahat Jollibee PHILCOA,” a former fastfood chain crew wrote.
“Last duty na kakalungkot mang isiping hinde n kita mababalikan pa, pero ganun talaga..,Salamat sa 7 years nating pag sasama [Jolli]bee [hang]gang sa muli,” a former cashier said.
What’s next for the business hub?
UP Diliman Vice-Chancellor for Planning and Development Raquel Florendo, said that PHILCOA area will be part of the developments related to MRT-7.
“It is something to do with safety and the major development…Safety that was already on the part of the local government, so that is already uncompromisable… In terms of retrofitting the building, it may not be anymore viable considering that there will be developments in the area related to MRT-7…They’re going to build already the area where the pedestrians will go up from the terminal,” Florendo was quoted in a report.
The MRT-7 is a 22-kilometer rail line from North Avenue, Quezon City to San Jose del Monte in Bulacan.
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